Building The Perfect Beast

Reading, Writing, Wanderlust, and Commentary

Why I’m No Longer on Facebook

leave a comment

Matt Honan as an interesting article on Wired that illustrates exactly why I left Facebook a few months back. He spent two days “liking” everything he saw and the end result was that his entire newsfeed became a giant clutter of garbage. While that should come as no surprise, what is disconcerting is how Honan’s “likes” began cluttering the feeds of his Facebook friends:

While I expected that what I saw might change, what I never expected was the impact my behavior would have on my friends’ feeds. I kept thinking Facebook would rate-limit me, but instead it grew increasingly ravenous. My feed become a cavalcade of brands and politics and as I interacted with them, Facebook dutifully reported this to all my friends and followers.

That first night, a small little circle with a dog’s head popped up in the corner of my phone. A chat head, from Facebook’s Messenger software! The dog turned out to be my old WIRED editor, John Bradley. “Have you been hacked,” he wanted to know. The next morning, my friend Helena sent me a message. “My fb feed is literally full of articles you like, it’s kind of funny,” she says. “No friend stuff, just Honan likes.”

This is exactly what began happening to me. I “liked” almost nothing on Facebook, but my newsfeed was becoming increasingly cluttered with the detritus of what my friends liked. Less about their families and photos of their vacations, more and more about what band of the 70s they were and what shampoo they enjoyed.

I’d like to say I miss Facebook, but I don’t. I miss the real, personal updates that helped keep my finger on the pulse of my friend’s personal lives, but I don’t miss the trashed-up news feed at all. And I’m never going back…

Written by Jeffery Battersby

August 11th, 2014 at 12:38 pm

Posted in Commentary,Featured

Tagged with , ,

Briefly Review

leave a comment

Next up for me in Macworld’s Mac Gems fest, Briefly, a tool that helps you combine hundreds of sequential photos into a single stop-action video. While iPhoto offers the same capabilities, Briefly makes quick work of what might otherwise be a tedious project.

Written by Jeffery Battersby

July 17th, 2014 at 12:04 pm

SnapNDrag Pro Review

leave a comment

Not 100% sure on this yet, but SnapNDrag Pro may become my new go-to screen capture app. Simple and intuitive, it also offers annotation traction. Pretty slick app overall. My Macworld review, and my first entry in this year’s Macworld Gem Fest, here.

Written by Jeffery Battersby

July 16th, 2014 at 9:31 am

Posted in Featured,Macworld,Reviews,Writing

Tagged with

Ten Things Everyone Should know How To Do With A Word Processor

leave a comment

Fun new article now posted at Macworld on ten things your should know how to do with your word processor. Nothing too fancy here, but all things, other than typing, you should know how to do in your favorite word processor.

Written by Jeffery Battersby

July 16th, 2014 at 9:25 am

QuickBooks app for Mac Review

leave a comment

My new review of Intuit’s QuickBooks app for Mac is now live at

QuickBooks app for Mac is a standalone application that lets you manage your QuickBooks Online account using an app on your Mac rather than a Web browser, which is the way you’d normally manage QuickBooks Online. In terms of appearance, there is no difference between the online and app-based versions of QuickBooks Online, but in the future Intuit promises offline access to your QuickBooks Online data, which could be hugely beneficial.

If you’re using QuickBooks Online I highly recommend QuickBooks app for Mac.

Written by Jeffery Battersby

June 19th, 2014 at 9:26 am

Tony Gwynn

leave a comment

Tony Gwynn died today.

Gwynn’s love for the low-key atmosphere in San Diego and his devotion to the Padres may have been costly. He shunned free agency in favor of multiyear contracts, and in April 1997, after having won seven batting championships, he signed a three-year contract extension for $12.6 million. In its final season, 104 players earned more than his $4.3 million salary, according to The Times.

But he told The Times during his final season: “Twenty years in one place, one city. It looks good.”

To my mind Gwynn was a player like Jeter is today; a humble, sweet, hard working, lover of the game.

Sad day…

Written by Jeffery Battersby

June 16th, 2014 at 4:27 pm

Posted in Asides,Featured

Moneydance 2014 Review

leave a comment

My Moneydance review is up at Nice little java-based Mac financial app that does a fine job of helping you harness your personal financial info. Not perfect, but still good.

Written by Jeffery Battersby

June 12th, 2014 at 1:59 pm